Has the ‘lockdown’ lifestyle left your teeth looking duller than usual?
With dental practices, including our own, now up and running, it is worth looking at some of the things that may have happened to your teeth and gums whilst we were closed.
We covered some of the clinical problems that could have occurred and how we could help in recent blogs, but today we are going to take a look at the aesthetic aspect of your smile and how it may have suffered over the last few months.
Aesthetic consequences of lockdown
There are a number of potential reasons why our teeth may have become duller whilst we were all in lockdown and under the various restrictions enforced. The following is not an exhaustive list but suggests some of the most likely ways that our Woking patients may have ended up with darker looking teeth than they’d ideally like.
Diet – Most of us will probably admit to a change of diet during lockdown. Especially in the earlier stages where we were more confined to our homes, many of us would probably have found ourselves at a loose end (despite our good intentions of learning new skills etc). One thing that a lot of us will do when we are bored is eat, and very often foods that offer little nutritional value and which may also affect the surface enamel of our teeth. The additional tea and coffee drunk during this time will also have played a role.
Lack of care – Although most of us will probably have managed to keep to our usual oral health regimen of regular brushing and flossing, for some folk, this time will have been especially stressful and usual norms may not have applied. When we are feeling anxious or depressed, we may neglect ourselves a little and this may include failing to clean our teeth as often or as well as we should. It is quite possible that some of us may even have started smoking again which is especially likely to turn our teeth yellow.
No hygienist – Anyone who sees the hygienist at Synergy Parkside in Woking on a regular basis for a scale and polish will know that, in addition to helping to protect our oral health, it also removes much of the surface staining from our teeth. Although it requires a teeth whitening procedure to lighten teeth where the inner part has darkened over time, this surface stain removal is certainly a benefit worth having. With our practice closed for a few months, some of you will have missed out on this and you may have noticed more discolouration in your teeth than normal.
Time to shine?
If your teeth have lost their sparkle over the last few months, what can you do about it? You could try the various teeth whitening toothpastes that are advertised but these are only likely to offer a small amount of benefit which may be almost unnoticeable. Alternatively, if you want to really improve the whiteness of your teeth, you could make an appointment with us to allow us to help you to restore the whiteness.
There are 3 ways in which this can be done.
Scale and polish – If you have missed an appointment, it is time to make a new one and get yourself back on track with regular scale and polishes, Not only will this remove much surface staining but is also important in the prevention of gum disease.
Teeth whitening – Not only does this non invasive treatment remove the surface staining but will also lighten the internal part of the tooth which darkens as we grow older. As the enamel on our teeth is translucent, this will show through and lightening the inner part is the only effective solution for this problem. Our in-house whitening treatment takes just an hour to improve the whiteness of your teeth by several shades.
Porcelain veneers – there will be patients whose teeth were already heavily stained before lockdown and this period has pushed them to a point where more more complex intervention is required. Whilst it may be possible to offer some improvement with a tooth whitening procedure, veneers may offer a more effective and longer term solution for those where staining is significant. Our friendly dental team will be able to guide you through the various options available.
As we are now able to socialise more, it is important that we can greet our friends and family with an attractive and welcoming smile. A nice white set of teeth will certainly help to do this! If you would like to find out more about the various options available or to book a consultation to see a cosmetic dentist, please call Synergy Parkside, your local dentist, on 01483 766355 and speak to one of our receptionists.